There are no shortage of books and blogs on leadership styles and techniques, containing multiple different styles and techniques for leading. After recently reading a variety of articles and books on this topic, I noticed common themes that leadership experts such as Simon Sinek, John Maxwell and Daniel Pink are aligned on.
While this is not an exhaustive list of leadership traits, some common themes experts highlight are:
Good Leaders Know how to Listen
Attentive listening can be hard, but good leaders need to become proficient and active listeners in order to understand and inspire their teams.
Good Leaders Foster Communication
A good leader understands that they are not a substitute for face to face interaction. It is up to the leader to engage their team and create a space for conversation.
Good Leaders Create Space for Growth
In order for people to thrive, they need to feel safe before they can be creative. While organisations cannot always control external forces that might create stress for their staff, they can impact the working environment for their people.
Safe spaces create room for employee growth, thus resulting in teams that can master their craft, resulting in greater motivation and efficiency.
Good Leaders Understand Motivation
By taking the time to understand each of your employees and what motivates them, then adapting your leadership style for different people, it can help you to set up an environment that supports both the success of your people and the success of your organisation.
Good Leaders Adapt Their Style
There is a clear divide between management and leadership: management is process driven, while leadership is people driven. A good leader understands motivations and drivers, as well as how much direction people need to perform their job successfully.
Furthermore, adaptive leaders understand that while one of their roles is to help their people to grow and succeed, they too need to learn, develop and hone their leadership skills.